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TO THE LIGHTHOUSE
fragments, frightened, effusive, tumultuous, a
flock of starlings.
"Jasper!" said Mr, Bankes. They turned
the way the starlings flew, over the terrace.
Following the scatter of swift-flying birds in the
sky they stepped through the gap in the high
hedge straight into Mr. Ramsay, who boomed
tragically at them, " Someone had blundered! "
His eyes, glazed with emotion, defiant with
tragic intensity, met theirs for a second, and
trembled on the verge of recognition; but then,
raising his hand half-way to his face as if to avert,
to brush off, in an agony of peevish shame, their
normal gaze, as if he begged them to withhold for
a moment what he knew to be inevitable> as if he
impre$sed upon them his own child-like resent-
ment of interruption, yet even in the moment of
discovery was not to be routed utterly, but was
determined to hold fast to something of this
delicious emotion, this impure rhapsody of which
he was ashamed, but in which he revelled—he
turned abruptly, slammed his private door on
them; and, Lily Briscoe and Mr. Bankes, looking
uneasily up into the sky, observed that the flock
of starlings which Jasper had routed with his gun
had settled on the tops of the elm trees.